I liked the idea of a parallel to Dante's Divine Comedy with Beatrice and Virgil as our guides to discovery. The simple language, the brave humor, the loving touch, and gentle conversation between two doomed creatures who have seen much and suffered more elicits a moan of pain, sadness, and regret. The Purgatorio repeatedly refers to the implications of a , such as the different stars visible in the , the altered position of the , and the various of the Earth. My eleven-year-old son read this book, because he loved Life of Pi better than anything else he ever read. I got nothing of my liking. I think most available literary devices were used and you can have great fun spotting the various references to other works; many are blindingly obvious, others less so. It is an excellent example of bricolage.
Henry tracks down the letter writer, who turns out to be an elderly, taciturn taxidermist — also named Henry. They witness the Envious penitents being punished by having their eyelids sewn shut with iron wire. A lot of this book seems somewhat pointless and the meaning behind a lot of it gets quite lost in translation. The great thing, however, is that the novel clears itself up as it continues until I eventually run out of pages to read. However, the randomness of this text is very hard to follow and understand. Their awkward banter is interesting and a joy to read. I understood a lot of references and certain Holocaust illusions, but I do not think as a whole the book portrayed that to me.
The reasons he gives for writing about that subject aren't very compelling. Having said that it is extremely well written. Yann has succeeded in writing an ingenious and poignant book, but also an annoying and sometimes rather whining book. Imagine my surprise to read the opening of this book and find myself reading about myself, in a fashion. It contains a Flaubert short story and the page to a play, by the sender, about a donkey named Beatrice and a monkey named Virgil. He loved a fantasy about her, even never having met her.
Dante meets and converses with several great saints of the Church, including , , , and. However, I was more than pleasantly surprised. Why did his play take place on a t-shirt? It begins with a mysterious parcel, and it ends in a place that will make you think again about one of the most significant events of the twentieth century. I just want to put this entire episode out of my mind forever. I did not really like the book and the randomness did not work for me until the end when all the randomness came together to create a very interesting ending. A torture scene is entirely harrowing and altogether too real.
The story within a story within a story is intriguing. A hundred and fifty pages of rationalization for 50 pages of interesting story just isn't worth my time. After much contemplation, Henry goes to meet the fan and is perplexed by the strange manner of Henry, the taxidermist, who is writing a play and presumably needs the author's help to finish it. This relative lack of conflict is not necessarily a bad thing, but you pretty much only have what is said in dialogue to go off of, rather than any actions or reactions. Mikkelsen 1 Reading Beatrice and Virgil was an extremely odd experience for me. The Divine Comedy was not always as well-regarded as it is today. In a way, scenes involving the talking animals seemed more believable than sections involving the author and the taxidermist, and I was less critical of the talking animals than I was of the author and the taxidermist.
Quando se está ao sol, pode evitar-se criar sombra? Even though I still despise this book, I'll give it one star, but only under protest!!!! When it does shine through it is lovely, especially early in the book read the 3 page description of a pear during the play that comes to him in bits and pieces by a struggling writer also with writer's block clothed as a taxidermist. . The reference to Dante is very clear but then only to the 1st part of the Divina Comedia; has Yann also read the unparalleled parts 2 and 3? The pear scene particularly stuck out to me. That's not what I think of though. So, if you were to compare it with Life of Pi, which shouldn't be fair but which it really seems like the author want's us to do, well, here you go. It is just not working for me.
I think that was a clever way to allude to the Holocaust, especially when the taxidermist tells Henry that two thirds of animals are extinct, much like two thirds of the Jews were eliminated during the Holocaust. Rather they are another awkward element in this disappointing and often perverse novel. Although I'm normally the first person to be turned off by postmodern self-referentiality, it didn't bother me here. Simple objects like pears and shirts contain symbolism beyond the text. Later authors such as , , , and have drawn on it for inspiration. In an attempt to create a morality extending beyond the Nazi story to make it a truly universal theme he started well with the concepts of animals instead of people in the country of shirt. This book was a surprise.
There is a spot of Proust in there. Eyebrows furrowed, head scratched, questions raised, and little answers given. Echoing great voices in literature through the centuries, Martel chooses elements from many to create a symbolically dense, but figuratively simple narrative in which a taxidermist lovingly recreates the beauty once inherent in animals now long dead. In central Italy's political struggle between , Dante was part of the Guelphs, who in general favored the over the. Beatrice and Virgil is a jumble: a writer who's book has just been rejected, a play that is occasionally exquisitely written that vibrates with beauty and life, a coming-to-terms with the Holocaust, the revealing of a Nazi war criminal who somehow escaped detection who is allowed to live a silent life of peace, a hungry donkey and the scream of a Howler monkey. It is meant to make you feel something that cannot be spoken directly about.
It's also a very clever book, without being at all pretentious or slick. All in all this book caught my attention, but it was not one of my favorite novels I have read in this class. The taxidermist, whose past I won't reveal for it would spoil the story, is writing his play ostensibly to draw attention to needless animal cruelty, to the destruction of their natural habitats, their homelessness. Surprisingly violent, a bit disturbing, ultimately strange and disquieting. The first seven spheres of Heaven deal solely with the cardinal virtues of , , and. It is communicating a feeling about something anyone who was not there can never truly know.
I also do not enjoy the fact that he kills the dog when he believes in preserving animal life. Martel's narrator is transparently a stand-in for him My eleven-year-old son read this book, because he loved Life of Pi better than anything else he ever read. We may all look different and seem different but if we were put in this situation most people would choose to follow along the leader in order to protect your family. The different parts make no sense--the dialogue of the pear, the relationship of Beatrice and Virgil, and most of the other details like them living in the country of Shirt. I guess, when it comes down to it, writing being an art form, there's some pain in good art.